It’s no surprise that General Motor’s tight finances will hold it back from producing a production version of a concept like the Cadillac Converj. But you have to ask yourself why cash-strapped GM would invest money in a concept that it sees no future for in the short-term – especially in terms of profitability.
According to Bob Lutz, GM’s Vice Chairman of global product development, the production version of the Converj would look exactly like that the concept – but that’s what he said about the Volt when it came out too. Either way, the Caddy version of the Volt is from from ready to be put into production.
“Ready to go? Well, first we have to prove to ourselves that we have the money,” Lutz told Automotive News. “And then that it’s a high enough priority to displace something else, and that we can actually make money on the vehicle, and that there is potential customer interest and so forth. We haven’t done any of that work yet.”
But it’s not the lithium-ion battery that’s the issue this time. GM already has a supplier for the battery for the Volt which will arrive in Nov. 2010. The problem with the Converj is pricing. Lutz says that GM would have to price the Converj as a luxury-coupe.
When asked whether the $40,000 Chevrolet Volt should be badged as a Cadillac, Lutz said: “Yes and no. In terms of recovering the cost from the technology, doing it in a Cadillac would have made it financially easier to do. On the other hand, we wanted something that was globally applicable, and our big “” close to 5 million unit “” brand is Chevrolet. So with the Volt, we can sell it around the world.”